Caring in the Ivory Tower

  • O'Brien L
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Abstract

In this paper I argue that the teacher educators who deliberately create and nurture caring teacher-student relationships, despite the many challenges, benefit both themselves and their students in several ways. Although the notion that teachers should care for their students is not new, it may well be that professors too seldom communicate their caring clearly to students. First, I outline the literature on caring in education and provide examples of how professors show they care - and why students find this so important. Building on my belief that all (good) teaching involves humans in relation, I then describe how I use beginning-of-the-semester, one-to-one meetings with new students as one example of how caring can be operationalized. In an era when content-matter dissemination and accountability are increasingly reified, it is crucially important to see and treat our students as whole people rather than consumer-critics so that the dominant reductionist and consumerist traditions)

Author-supplied keywords

  • Caring
  • Modeling pedagogy

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Authors

  • Leigh M. O'Brien

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